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Putting up Tomatoes: The Easy Way

Posted by Peggy on September 18, 2014

Recipe: Putting Up Tomatoes: The Easy Way


  • Home-grown or locally-grown tomatoes, ripened until juicy; enough to fit your enameled cast-iron pot (12 tomatoes fit mine)
  • Extra virgin olive oil, as needed
  • Chopped onions, leeks or shallot, optional
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, optional
  • Kosher salt to taste (I used 1 tablespoon)
  • Extra virgin olive oil (I used 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil)
  • Red wine (I used 1 cup)
  • Finely chopped garlic (I used 1 tablespoon)
  • Fresh chopped basil, optional


  1. With a sharp knife, carve out stem end and slice off bottom end of each tomato. Cut into 1/2-inch diced pieces.
  2. Heat a tablespoon or two olive oil in the bottom of an enameled cast iron Dutch oven. (See above notes regarding importance of the cooking vessel.) Stir in onion, leek or shallot, if using. Stir in fennel seeds, if using. Cook over medium low heat, stirring, until vegetables are aromatic. Stir in tomatoes, olive oil and wine, if using. Bring to a low boil, stirring occasionally, until reduced to desired consistency. (I simmer my sauce 5-6 hours.)
  3. When sauce is room temperature, stir in basil, if using. Spoon into containers (see above notes) and freeze.
Preparation time: 30 minute(s) Cooking time: 4-6 hours

Number of servings (yield): 10-12 cups (40 ounces)

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